Founder and director of The Barefoot K9 Project accused of running a scam

The Barefoot K9 Project in Homerville, Georgia is a charitable organization offering service dogs for veterans, disabled adults and children. It all sounds very admirable and philanthropic, however many clients who relied on the project told Action News Jax  in Florida that they have all been the victims of a money-making scam that has spanned across Georgia and Alabama..  Now, the organization’s founder Cecil Allen Brown (alias) Moose Brown) and his partner Coleen Miller are allegedly on the run.

Sheila Weaks, a resident of Lacy’s Spring, Alabama knew something was wrong when her son Samuel never got the dog that had been promised him. Sheila heard about The Barefoot K9 on Craigslist and sent an email to them explaining Samuel’s needs and was happy when she received an immediate response. Once an application was filed, she and her son were approved. However, the Barefoot K9 Project then informed Sheila the service dog would cost $30,000.00; quite a daunting amount for a lower middle class family.The Project assured Sheila they would not turn her and Samuel away although they were unable to pay.  They set up a GoFundMe and RallyUp accounts to collect donations to cover the cost of the dog.

When the time came to get a dog, and start the training process, Samuel was so excited; all he could talk about was when he would meet his new friend and if he could name him.  Unfortunately, Samuel, like many others who placed their trust in The Barefoot K9, would never receive his dog.

Coleen Miller, the former director of The Barefoot K9 Project, issued a very disturbing public statement by way of a Faceboook video In her statement, she claimed the organization’s founder Cecil Allen Brown is unemployed and using the money earned from the nonprofit for his personal gain. She displayed on camera some of the receipts for items purchased by Brown including jewelry, handbags, and a Caribbean vacation. She also showed a statement from the bank indicating the non-profit’s account was $1400.00 overdrawn, yet they have collected over $100,000.00 in donations over the years.

Not only was money allegedly stolen from donors and families of disabled children, but dogs donated by breeders have also gone missing.   According to one of the breeders, there were 40 dogs at the facility back in October 2016. As of last week, when Sheriff’s deputies went to the property there were only seven dogs remaining;  33 dogs are assumed missing.

According to Action News Jax, a breeder from Hazelhust, Georgia, said she gave Brown four dogs to be trained as service dogs, but later found two of them for sale on Craigslist. In a Facebook post, a woman alleges she donated a dog to the organization to become a service dog was used for breeding instead. She said one of the puppies ended up dying.  In another allegation, a dog named Chipella, belonging to a hearing-impaired girl named Cynthia Walker was sent to The Barefoot K9 Project to train as her service dog.  Once at The Barefoot K9 Project, Chipella received no training, never went to a veterinarian and had a litter of puppies that died. Now no one knows where the dog is. A reward has been offered to find Chipella and bring her home.  Any information on Chipella can be called in to 910-322-9333 or 910-584-2226.

Law enforcement is conducting investigations in both Alabama and Georgia. Sheila filed a complaint with the Morgan County Sheriff’s Office in Alabama for the $2,000.00 she paid to The Barefoot K9 Project.  Other families have reported losses up to $15,000.00 according to Action News Jax.Sheila is currently helping families file their police reports. She is also working with the breeders who donated dogs to track down their missing animals and trying to repay businesses, family, and friends who donated to her and Samuel.

Sheila, in an interview with  WAFF 48 stated, “There’s a special place in hell for people who take advantage of special needs kids. And that’s exactly what he did.” Cecil Allen Brown has not responded nor commented and is believed to be residing in Homerville, Georgia.

 

 

 

 

 

18 replies
  1. linda says:

    I wish Craigslist would eliminate using any animals on their post. I have heard horror stories when people have answered their ads to adopt or buy pets. Also wish people would not use the post to sell or re home their pets.

    Reply
    • Gizmos Mommy says:

      I wish that particular website would disappear as there are far too many horror stories coming from transactions especially those involving animals.

      Reply
  2. linda says:

    30 thousand dollars for a service dog? Am I missing something? Aren’t there organizations that deal with donating or for a small fee to those that need service dogs? I know some health insurance companies do help.

    Reply
    • Karla Brewster says:

      Yes, that seems extreme, but is not actually off base.
      Non profits generally charge a small fee and require “fundraising”
      Private trainers, like myself, who are reputable charge 10,000 to 20,000…bit we loose money. If it is done correctly.

      Unfortunately insurance companies do not pay for service dogs

      Reply
  3. Gizmos Mommy says:

    They both look like failed retroactive abortions. I hope they get caught and sent to prison where they will be taught lessons from inmates.

    Reply
  4. Barkley's Mom says:

    Despicable POS’s taking advantage of people like this! I hope they are caught and prosecuted and I hope they are able to find out what happened to the missing dogs. People like this deserve to rot in Hell!

    Reply
  5. Cynthia Como says:

    Absolutely HORRENDOUS!! I would never buy ANYTHING off of Craig’s List BECAUSE THEY REFUSE TO BAN THE SELL OF ANIMALS ON THEIR SITE!! It’s for that reason I would NEVER be involved with this site! They put their profits over and above the well being of animals! THEY ARE SICKENING!! I recall the case of a psycho the got 23 dogs,at various times,and brutally and systematically slowly tortured them to death! The details are way too horrifying for me to talk about! He is now in prison,I remember that this case sparked pressure on Craig’s List to ban the sell of animals on their site but it fell on deaf ears! THE FEW EXTRA DOLLARS THAT THEY MIGHT LOSE THRU THE BAN OD SELLING ANIMALS ON THEIR SIGHT MEANT MORE TO THEM? I wish the whole site would crash and burn!!!

    Reply
    • Gizmos Mommy says:

      I’m going to encourage everyone to read the Spring issue of BARk magazine where the topic of pet health care is discussed. It’s an eye opening article. Seems pet health care is going the “corporate” route just like people. For-profit companies are running the show with little care for living creatures with both four and two legs.

      Reply
  6. Nancy Raymond says:

    These two piss poor excuses for human beings will hopefully get their just dues – they are both unfit to live – they scammed people and used dogs for their own greed – I just hope they run into someone who they are unable to scam and gives them the punishment they so well deserve. In addition, Craigslist is a horror for any animal posted on its site – they are no more than a greedy inhumane site and the whole thing should be shut down permanently –

    Reply
  7. Brenda says:

    What really bothers me is the fact that dogs are missing with no explanation where are they????do not see any pictures they should have been posted also the fact that good people donated money to a good cause and also animals in the hope that people who were disabled would get there K9
    This is unspeakable what kind of people do this we need justice in this case how could we be so gullible we must work harder to help those in need
    Let’s do our homework????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

    Reply
  8. Inspector Bark says:

    More reason why 501c3 charitable organizations needs to be regulated! So sick of these lowlife scam artists using animals to benefit off of. And for Craigslist, I agree with the other people posting here. Animals should NOT be on Craigslist, PERIOD!

    Reply
  9. Janet says:

    Nothing will happen to Allen unless someone other than the local sheriff’s department get involved. He is the former son-in-law of the recently retired sheriff and he use to work in law enforcement. I doubt the GPS would even do anything unless they got unit other than the Douglas branch involved.

    Reply
  10. Anonymous says:

    I heard the Georgia FBI is involved now. It seems a little strange that Cecil would be buying jewelry, handbags, etc.. The account was probably in his name but the Director most likely had access to it. Cecil and Colleen were in a relationship (not just coworkers), which would explain the Caribbean cruise. In my opinion, they were both in on the scam. I really hope justice will be served to whomever is guilty.

    Reply

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